Chateau de Bardouly
Serene country retreat venue with fully equipped spaces and luxury boutique accommodation.
Available on Request
IN A NUTSHELL
Nestled beneath the rolling hills of the Dordogne Valley in south-west France, this beautifully restored 17th century chateau is a warm, inviting space with superb facilities that has hosted successful yoga, Pilates, cooking, painting, writing and wellness retreats since 2014. Set in 100 acres of protected woodland, and surrounded by castles and medieval villages, this retreat venue in France has a professionally-designed indoor yoga studio, a heated swimming pool and tennis court. The owners have created exquisite, characterful accommodation which reflects their attention to detail, making it the perfect place for a retreat of any kind, where guests can bask in stillness, comfort and seclusion to rest and recharge.
INDOOR RETREAT SPACES
The indoor yoga studio has a yoga-specific heating system, lighting and sound equipment, a set of high quality mats, blankets and blocks of varying sizes, as well as straps and wheels and even candles for your practice.
The gorgeous drawing room, reception room and dining room are available for workshops and other retreat activities, and there are two treatment rooms.
OUTDOOR RETREAT SPACES
The 800 square foot yoga platform in the oak forest makes yoga and Pilates practice an alfresco joy, and the Zen garden is perfect for quiet times, reading or relaxing.
There's also a heated saltwater pool, with plenty of umbrellas, and a top condition, hard surface tennis court. A firepit with sofas is a special venue for chanting, ceremonies and cosy evenings.
The 100 acres of parks, gardens and forests also have miles of trails for hiking, and country lanes and paths for cycling.
The nine bedrooms are exquisitely furnished, with imaginative decor, and all have en-suite bath/shower rooms. A mixture of kings, doubles and singles gives plenty of options for retreat guests. All rooms have wardrobes, a chest of drawers, bedside lamps and a writing desk, and linen and towels are by The White Company. Two bedrooms are in a guest house and all bedrooms are ensuite. Bathroom products are high quality and organic.
The Grand Salon includes two formal connected drawing rooms, sofas and chairs, two working fireplaces, a music system and a grand piano. There are two spacious living rooms with original tile floors, seating and satellite TV. A separate family room includes satellite TV, a music system, DVDs, books, board games, PlayStation and children’s toys. The library, which has around 2,000 books, also has a large screen television for movie nights and boxset evenings. A games room offers table tennis and football.
Yoga, tennis, swimming and treatments are available at the chateau, and there's equipment for football, cricket, badminton, croquet and boules.
Guests can also enjoy the nearby Dordogne River, which is perfect for canoeing, kayaking and sometimes surfing.
Culture vultures will love visiting the many UNESCO world heritage sites virtually on the doorstep, along with local markets and a collection of prehistoric paintings.
Alternatively, you can hike and bike, sample outstanding local restaurants, do a cookery course or visit some wineries.
Plum Village, Europe's largest Buddhist centre, is nearby.
Food is farm-to-table, fresh, seasonal and delicious, as the much-acclaimed local chef lives on a biodynamic farm. All food groups are catered for, including vegan and vegetarian. You can also savour wines from the region. Retreat leaders are welcome to bring their own chef.
Enjoy breakfast at the handcrafted cherry wood table in the inviting kitchen and have dinner in the formal dining room. A family-style table at the front of the house looks out on the park and cedar grove.
Or you might prefer the cosy sofas on the terrace, where the views are truly inpiring. The covered patio by to the pool is a great spot for lunch or drinks and dinner while watching the sunset.
Over the past 20 years Bardouly has undertaken an annual programme of tree planting, averaging 15 new trees per year. In addition, three fields have been re-sown, creating forests of new oak, chestnut, cedar and other varieties.
All food waste is either composted or used to feed the chef’s chickens. Non-food waste is recycled each week and there are clearly marked bins for recyclable materials.
Wherever possible, plastics aren't used. Rainwater is collected to help irrigate the orchard and there is a power generation service for guests with electric cars.
Bardouly was set up as a social enterprise, committed to hiring local people and supporting nearby service providers. Through the expansion of the retreat, businesses in the rural community have been able to grow and prosper.
Gracious hosts with an eye for perfection, the outdoor wooden platform tucked away in an oak forest, the walled Zen garden, nearby UNESCO World Heritage sites for cultural visits - and it is sooooo quiet.
The Less Than Ordinary
You need a car to drive to the nearest town, and if you're used to 24/7 central heating, you might need extra layers come October.
24500 St Aubin de Cadelech
Bergerac or Bordeaux